Pictures of Hollis Woods
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Pictures of Hollis Woods, by Patricia Reilly Giff, is an emotional story about a twelve year old girl searching for a family. Hollis Woods is abandoned as a baby and spends her life being sent to various foster homes, where she doesn't stay long. Her story alternates between the time she spends with Josie Cahill and the summer she spends with the Regan family.
Read the highlighted passage. What can you infer about the meaning of Hollis' picture of a family and her choice of "W" words?
The highlighted passage is important because it reveals that Hollis does not want anyone to see into her soul. This is because she has a low perception of herself or low self esteem.
What can you infer about Hollis' behavior at her previous foster homes?
Did you know that you can look up any word in the text of the book or the text of the questions and answers? Just click (or press on mobile devices) the word you want to define and hold until the blue text selector pops up. When you release, a define option will appear. Since it's so easy to look up words, make sure you use this feature frequently... Is there a word on this page you need to look up?
What is the "mustard woman's" role in Hollis' life?
Pay attention to the highlighted passage because it explains why Hollis runs away from foster families. Do you think she will stay with Josie?
How does Hollis feel about Josie so far? Do you think Hollis' new foster home is off to a good start? Why or why not? Include quotes from the text to support your answer.
As you read, you will be asked to quote from the text when explaining what the text says explicitly and when drawing inferences. The following video help you understand inferences. (This annotation contains a video)
Which of the following is not one of Steven's hobbies or interests?
What does the highlighted text reveal about how Hollis feels about Steven?
Which of the following interests do Josie and Hollis have in common?
The highlighted passage reveals that Josie has a tendency to not send Hollis to school. What does this tell you about the kind of foster parent Josie is?
Describe the character of Josie. Include quotes from the text to describe her physical characteristics and her personality.
As you read the highlighted passage, think about what it means to be salt-water people and freshwater people. Do you consider yourself to be one or the other?
Hollis' memories of the Regan family reveal that _______.
Hollis is from Long Island, New York. Long Island is an island that stretches from New York Harbor into the Atlantic Ocean. It is the most populated island in any U.S. state or territory. As you read about the setting of the Regan family's summer house, think about how different it is from Long Island. The image below shows what Long Island looks like. (This annotation contains an image)
What do each of the descriptions Hollis' pictures reveal to the reader?
The highlighted sentence reveals Hollis' feelings of regret about running away from the Regan family. Think of a time when you did something that you later regretted. How did you handle your feelings of regret?
What kind of artist is Josie?
The highlighted sentence once again reveals Hollis' poor self esteem. What would you say to her to encourage her to think highly of herself?
Read the highlighted passage. Which of the following describes something you have learned about Izzy so far?
What have you learned about Josie's financial situation? Is she responsible with money or irresponsible with it?
Analyze the highlighted passage. What does it reveal about Hollis' feelings toward the Regan family and her desire to be part of a family?
Have you noticed any themes developing in the story? The following video will show you how to determine the theme or themes of a story. (This annotation contains a video)
Which of the following describes how Hollis is a "new person" with the Regan family?
Who is the narrator of the story? As you read, think about how the narrator's point of view influences how events are described.
Beatrice feels that Hollis' drawings are __________.
Analyze the meaning of the highlighted passage. Do you agree with Beatrice's viewpoint?
Why is Hollis lucky?
Hollis's talented drawing skills are described as gift. What gifts and talents do you have?
The relationship between Steven and his father can best be described as ________.
How do you think the mustard woman will react if she finds out Hollis is not in school? What kind of problems can skipping school create for Josie and Hollis's foster care arrangement?
Why do Hollis and Josie need good luck?
Do you think Josie purposely allows Hollis to skip school or is she too forgetful to remember to send her to school?
Describe Josie as a foster parent. In what ways is she a good parent to Josie and in what ways is she an irresponsible parent? Include quotes from the text to support your answer.
Beatrice suggest that Josie is forgetful because of old age. Do you think this is true or do you think she has a medical condition that causes memory loss?
Why is Beatrice hesitant to leave Josie?
As you read, you will be asked to determine the meanings of words and phrases, including figurative language such as metaphors and similes. The following video will explain the concept of simile and metaphor. (This annotation contains a video)
How does Hollis feel when Steven first offers to teach her how to drive?
How does Hollis feel once she starts driving? Have you ever driven a car, either a real one or a car at a theme park? Can you relate to the way Hollis feels?
Compare and contrast the setting of Josie's home and surroundings with that of the Regan family's home and surroundings. Which environment do you think Hollis prefers?
Have you ever done chores or work to earn money? What did you do with the money you earned? Think about the things that Hollis wants to buy with the money she earns? What does it tell you about Josie's financial situation?
Why does the mustard woman plan on putting Hollis in a different foster home?
How does Hollis feel about being placed in a different foster home? What do you think she will do about this?
Who is Joseph Regan?
How does Hollis feel about the prospect of being adopted by the Regan family? Are you surprised that she ran away from them?
Read the highlighted passage and think about the events in the chapter. Describe a theme of the story that is revealed in the chapter.
Think about the problem that Hollis is facing in this chapter. What can Hollis do to solve it?
What is Hollis's plan to save Josie?
Think about a time when you faced a tough decision. What did you decide? Do you think Hollis is making a good decision by running off with Josie?
How do the Regans' feel about Hollis joining their family?
Pay attention to the figurative language in the highlighted passage. Do you notice any similes or metaphors?
Hollis often has to take care of Josie instead of Josie taking care of her. Explain the ways in which Hollis takes care of Josie. What problems could Hollis encounter as she runs away with Josie, who is not in the best of health?
Do you think it's a good idea for Josie to be going on a long drive on a snowy night? In what ways in this a dangerous adventure?
What does the phrase, "right as rain" mean? Use context clues to help you.
Have you noticed how the characters in the story have developed and changed as the story progresses? The following video will explain the concept of character development. (This annotation contains a video)
Which of the following describes a way in which the Regans' home in Branches is a good hiding place for Hollis and Josie?
Read the highlighted passage. Pay attention to the ways in which the imagery paints a clear picture in your mind of the setting.
Explain why Hollis's realization that she left the drawing box at the Regan home is her worst moment.
Do you think Hollis is doing the right thing by staying at the Regan family's home or do you think she is wrong to go there?
Which of the following is an example of a simile?
How does Hollis feel about being reunited with her drawing box? Have you ever lost something special to you and then found it again? How did you feel when you found it?
Which of the following describes how Hollis feels when she successfully gets the car parked in the shed?
What does the highlighted passage reveal about Steven's relationship with his father? Why do you think Old Man is always upset with Steven?
Do you think Hollis is to blame for Steven and the Old Man not getting along? Why or why not?
Why do you suppose the Regan family left Hollis' photograph on the wall? Do you think they are hopeful that she will return and join their family?
What does the highlighted passage reveal about Josie's mental state?
Do you think Josie and Hollis are alone and safe in the woods? Or do you think there are other people nearby?
What can you infer, or guess, based on Hollis's feelings about the truck?
Have you read any of Laura Ingalls Wilder's books? Laura Elizabeth Ingalls was an American writer, most notably the author of the Little House series of children's novels based on her childhood in a pioneer family. A popular 1974–84 television series based on the Little House books starred Melissa Gilbert as Wilder. The following image is a picture of Wilder, who lived from 1867-1957. (This annotation contains an image)
Which of the following best describes the mood of the highlighted passage?
Do you think Hollis really saw a person in the woods? Or do you think it was just her imagination or a large animal?
Describe why Hollis is so happy in the Tenth Picture. What theme does this picture represent?
Pay attention to the imagery in the highlighted passage. Think of the pictures that come to mind. Have you ever been in a big snow storm? How do you feel about the snow?
How does Hollis feel about celebrating Christmas?
Are you familiar with the Christmas song that Josie is singing? As you watch the following video of the song, "Walking in a Winter Wonderland," think about the setting of winter in Branches and the ways in which Josie and Hollis are living in a winter wonderland. (This annotation contains a video)
Which of the following is not one of the ways in which Hollis plans to celebrate Christmas?
Think about a time when you were away from home. Did you feel sad and homesick like Josie?
Explain why Hollis wants to climb the mountain alone.
Do you think it is wise of Hollis to climb the mountain alone? Think of a time when you did something dangerous. Did you get injured like Hollis?
Read the definition for the term, "incorrigible." Which of the following describes an incident in which Hollis is incorrigible?
Hollis reveals all of her faults to Steven and he doesn't mind that she has had a troubled past. What does that tell you about his feelings for Hollis? Have you noticed the themes of family and belonging emerging in the story?
How does Hollis feel about Josie?
Read the definition for the term, "waders." The following image shows what waders look like. (This annotation contains an image)
Explain why Josie is feeling homesick at the Branches home with Hollis. Include quotes from the text to support you explanation.
Read the highlighted passage. Do you think someone has seen Hollis and Josie in the Regans' home? Think about what could happen if someone finds them.
Read the highlighted passage. What can you infer about Mr. Regan's reaction to the accident?
The highlighted passage is important because it reveals why Hollis ran away from the Regan family.
Which of the following best describes the relationship between Josie and her cousin Beatrice.
The highlighted passage reveals another example of Hollis's poor self esteem. She focuses on her flaws and does not see the ways in which she is a good, beautiful person.
Despite Hollis' troubled past, describe the ways in which she is a good, kind person. Include evidence from the text to support your description.
Why do you think Mr. Regan comes to speak to Hollis? Do you think she should listen to him?
How do the Regans' feel about Hollis now that she is gone?
Hollis is feeling guilty for taking Josie away from the home where she belongs. In Chapter 15, Hollis also states that the Branches house is where she belongs. Do you notice a theme being revealed in this chapter?
What did Hollis learn from studying her drawings of Steven and Mr. Regan?
Are you surprised by the important revelation in Chapter 15? What do you predict will happen next?
Why is Steven referred to as "Santa Claus?"
Now that you are reaching the end of the story, watch the trailer for the movie version of "Pictures of Hollis Woods." Think about how the visual elements contribute to the meaning and beauty of the story. Does the trailer make you want to watch the movie? (This annotation contains a video)
In the highlighted passage, Steven explains some of the differences between him and his father and how they contribute to their arguments. Does their relationship resemble any of your relationships? Can you relate to a situation where you don't always see eye to eye with a family member, yet you love them anyway?
Steven has stated that Hollis doesn't know about families yet. Explain what he means by this as well as some things that Hollis needs to learn about families.
Think about the highlighted sentence. Do you think Hollis would have found her way back to the Regan family if she had not gotten into her current situation with Josie?
Which of the following describes a way in which Old Man "knows a lot" about Hollis?
Based on the information in the highlighted passage, it can be inferred that Josie has Alzheimer's disease. It is a disease of the brain that causes people to slowly lose their memory and mental abilities as they grow old.
What does Izzy mean when she says to Hollis, "You brought us luck?"